The Bermondsey Square Hotel was “previously voted the UK’s trendiest place to stay.” And the thing is, it is still trendy. Nothing is trendier in Britain these days than Sharia compliance. The Bermondsey Square Hotel is on the cutting edge of Britain’s future. Watch for many more hotels in Britain to follow its lead.
“Welcome to Hotel Sharia: No more bacon or booze as trendy venue bought out by a Muslim multi-millionaire,” by Tom Kelly and Emily Kent Smith, Daily Mail, November 15, 2014 (thanks to Kenny):
An exclusive hotel has banned alcohol and pork after being taken over by a Middle Eastern businessman who wants to run it ‘in accordance with Sharia law’.
The strict Islamic policy was imposed without warning this week at London’s Bermondsey Square Hotel – where the bar and grill was previously run by Masterchef judge Gregg Wallace.
Staff said the new rules were swiftly implemented on Tuesday on the orders of the new Muslim owner, forcing waiters to tell disgruntled guests that much of the menu was no longer available.
Diners were denied dishes that used only traces of alcohol – such as beer-battered fish, a pudding with ‘drunken cherries’ and rum ice cream. Drinkers were offered only non-alcoholic beer and elderflower cordial.
Forced to improvise, chefs are now trying to source chicken and beef sausages instead of pork varieties for breakfast and have replaced the popular hog roast with rabbit terrine.
The £220-a-night hotel is believed to be one of the first in the country to introduce the strict Muslim policy but staff say the changes have caused business to plummet, with many reservations cancelled.
Several fear for their jobs unless the hotel – previously voted the UK’s trendiest place to stay and where Gordon Ramsay once filmed a show – is marketed for a different clientele.
An IT consultant, who has been a regular at the hotel, said: ‘A group of us were meant to be meeting in the bar and they said: “We can’t serve alcohol any more.”
‘When I contacted the manager to ask why, he told me that the new owner wanted it to be a Sharia law hotel. Under Sharia law, you can’t make a profit from alcohol.’
The guest said he would no longer book the hotel in future, adding: ‘They’ve got to be careful. It’s been quiet and this is almost the death knell.’
On community website london-se1, a poster called Drgreenmark2 said customers were ‘kicking off’, adding: ‘Who on earth believes a “dry” hotel and restaurant is going to work in central London, never mind Bermondsey square? This is not Saudi Arabia!’…
Not yet, anyway. But it will be very like it before too long.